CEU President Michael Ignatieff: “Teaching begins. This is indeed momentous.”

The first cohort of Vienna-based CEU students began their classes today in Vienna. “An empty building in Quellenstrasse becomes a university. Teaching begins. This is indeed momentous” President and Rector Michael Ignatieff wrote in a message to the CEU community.

“Less than a year ago, we announced that the Hungarian government was forcing us to move US degree instruction to Vienna. Thanks to the extraordinary hard work of so many people at CEU, we were able to find a new building, fit it out and open it on time for a wonderful class of incoming students from 88 different countries” Ignatieff added.

The 2019/20 academic year is a year of transition for CEU, with first-year students spending time in both Vienna and Budapest. This fall, more than 300 U.S. degree students will be based in Vienna.

CEU’s new campus is located at 51 Quellenstrasse in Favoriten, at the heart of Vienna’s multicultural 10th District, one of the city’s most diverse locales. The-6-story building underwent a multimillion euro refurbishment before welcoming CEU students this fall.

Faculty, staff and students have been involved in determining the detailed requirements for the new campus. Their input has been critical in ensuring that the site fully supports CEU’s learning and research ambitions.

“Make no mistake: we are opening today in Vienna, but we will maintain a strong academic and public presence in the city that remains our spiritual home. Our battle to defend academic freedom and institutional autonomy in Hungary goes on” said the CEU president.

CEU is accredited in Hungary until the end of 2022 but is determined to maintain an active presence on its Budapest campus thereafter. While all CEU’s U.S. degree functions will be based in Vienna from 2020 onwards, some academic activities and resources will remain in Budapest, such as the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives (OSA), a valuable resource, not only for the city but for the whole region.